Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Act IV Halloween - Waning of the Event

The end is nigh. No more MK dungeon farming - still some time to stock up on mats and aim for achievements. 

I promise, as unlikely as it seems to you - after all you're a smart player who follows the markets so much so that you head to outside resources (like this site!) - the majority of players won't have thought as far ahead as to realise that there will be recipes after the event and no materials for them 'til now. Some won't even realise until it's much, much too late. 

How have you stocked up on so far? I note that candy corn is on the rise already. Not by much but this will continue as people realise it's going away. 

Don't get nervous and list your entire stock of Halloween mats when you see a particular material rise to a little bit more than you paid. A lot of investment-dabblers will do this. This will mean you'll see prices reaching up to plateaus where at random they'll fall. This will be a personal decision by a mats investor "I want to make sure I get money back, at this rate rather than nothing". It's fear on their part but may actually start knee jerk reactions on the part of other investors who think it's a crash. 

You want to think calmly, check around and establish two things if you can before you list some (never all at once, never!) of your stock for sale. 

1) Has any news been released to the community that indicates stocked GW2 Halloween mats will lose value. 
2) Has any major site speculated that NOW is the "peak" time to sell stocked guild wars Halloween mats?

If you can eliminate these two to the best of your ability then you're looking - almost 100% - at a heavy investor or a series of medium investors shedding their stock. Maybe they really need to buy something and are liquidating. Maybe they're panicking. Either way you don't need to follow. Be patient. 

Theoretically there doesn't need to be a peak for a material that won't reenter the economy. This isn't strictly true but bear that in mind if you start to feel the hole drop out of your breeches. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Mad King's Clocktower ...

I can explain your honour, I can explain! I'll tell you exactly why I didn't post anything intriguing or informative the other day... 

I had to complete it. I couldn't give in. I'm stubborn like that... even though it's not necessary to do this for the overall event achievement.

Now I have no real urge to do it over and over (though anyone who completes it has to get really good at it and it is fun - like an old school very hard platformer) but you can do this with MF gear on for lots of Trick or Treat bags after you loot the Mad King's Slippers the first time. 

It's < 3 minutes a run (or you'll already have failed) so in that sense it's not bad farming. It's certainly novel. 

A better alternative though is the dungeon. Get 4 like minded individuals and you can run this real fast with a chance at exotics in the chest at the end. It takes no more than 15 or 20 minutes once you get in the groove. 

I hear rumour's that there's also a chance at really rare items - the Halloween items. So that's definitely worth doing if you've lots of time and have already made all the Halloween investments you care to.

How are you guys spending the last few days of the event? I highly recommend giving the clock tower a bash - for me nothing has felt as good in GW2 so far!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Act III Halloween Event - What You Should Buy

The servers can't take it, they're buckling under the strain. So it's the perfect time to update you all with a summary of some of the things I'm buying and some of the great suggestions from the comment sections in previous Halloween event posts like this one, this one and this one

As expected Halloween items have been reaching a price trough - a point below which they won't or can't fall - and in some cases it removes all doubt about the quality of the investment. 

Let's take a look at some of the usual suspects - items we've been looking at in posts or comments so far (You can of course include chattering skull and other event themed items as well)

So what am I showing here? 

Note the prices on the TP and the vendor prices are almost the same. This is excellent news for an in-game investment. If you invest in any item near vendor price you're making what's known as a low risk investment. 

You don't stand to lose out much. At the very worst (if no one wants to buy them ever) they can be vendored and when you're looking at a 1 or 2 copper difference between TP and vendor price that's not much of a loss at all.

I recommend setting some buy orders for these at 1 copper above vendor price. Also check the TP for any items that are 2 or 3 or 4 (you set your own risk here) above vendor price and go wild. 

At this point I'm rather confident about event specific item investment. Of course, there are still things that could 'go wrong' but in the examples above it would take Arenanet intervention to specifically remove the vendor price of these items - I can't see why they'd do that.

Hope you get in the servers soon and have a look at the new content (I've been at a few parties - my birthday over the weekend so really want to get caught up on the book hunting, clock tower, achievements and now the dungeon!)


Note/ Candy Corn can't be vendored but I think corn is still a very safe investment, especially at < 5 copper.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Halloween Candy Corn Investment

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The finely named joey2beers asked a couple of questions in a pair of comments about candy corn investment in yesterday's mad king chest post. He asked (basically): 
I feel like if I don't bail on my investment of nearly 5,000 candy corn now I'm going to lose out? Am I being paranoid?
 There are absolutely tons on the market for 10 copper and I'm not sure the desirability there. I'm praying they jump up after Halloween but I'm quite sceptical.
I thought these were good questions and my comment response got a bit long winded so I started drafting up this post. 

There are a few things I want to look at here. First, will candy corn be desirable after the holidays? Second, will supply decrease? Finally, are there other things worth investing in? Or how much is too much? 

Let's answer the easiest first - supply will definitely decrease. There will be no more candy corn entering the market. That we know of - and this is an important thing to bear in mind. 

Arenanet may make them accessible through some forge recipe or something of that nature (I highly doubt this but never rule out possibilities completely). 

Will candy corn prove to be desirable after Halloween? If supply decreases but there's no demand then it's not that great an investment right? I think candy corn will remain in demand. Check out this gw2db list of recipes that require candy corn. 

I think demand will drop just after Halloween because there are themed event uses for the corn. Like trading 50 corn to the kids in Lion's Arch to get a personalised trick or treat bag and a chance at an endless halloween tonic (one example of extra Halloween candy corn uses). Look at how close the supply/orders are at the moment: 

You'll lose some of that demand post event. Hard to say how much. But there'll be (as far as we can tell) no more candy corn until next halloween - that's IF arenanet bring the same material back. They more than likely will but if they don't. Boy. 

I know there are dozens - probably hundreds of folks who've invested in candy corn because they believe it'll be worth something later. Of these investors, only a handful are the most patient. I'm thinking in terms of 4 months or more. That's aeons in MMO time. I have visions of corn going for a silver a piece this far down the line and though it's optimistic, it might not be unrealistic.

When you think in this time scale it's very hard to see candy corn as a poor investment. Keeping your money in gold is worse. Inflation - though Arenanet need to counter it to avoid a loss in gem revenue - will still inevitably devalue your in-game money. 

Even if candy corn proves to be less desirable than predicted. Even if there's close to 1 million corn in investor's pockets now. There's still very little chance you'll be burned by holding onto corn at the current low rates. 

The nervousness joey2beers feels there is entirely normal when investing - have I made the right call? Am I going to lose out? 5,000 corn at 10 copper is 5 gold. That's not a small amount of money at the moment. But when items are 10 copper and below the very worst you can do is lose 9/10th of that  investment. There's a bottom limit there - a cushion. So long as it's not your total funds you'll learn and be smarter and wiser. My advice is to leave a host of orders at half that too - 5 copper. You're even better insulated. 

Here's my final tip for today: develop balls of steel (and that's not aimed at joey in particular but all of us!)

Investing is never going to give you a 100% positive return. But if you bail before an investment reaches the period when you've calculated (logically) you'll start seeing good returns then you'll always be sitting on around the same gold total in your pot. 

Share your own thoughts, I'm looking forward to them!


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Mad King Chests

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So the recipe for Mad King Chests went in overnight. You can use the following mystic forge recipe to create these chests from the contents of holiday Black Lion Chests

1 x Candycorn
6 x Mystery Tonic
1 x Booster
1 x Booster

The chests themselves are another lottery ticket - another roll of the dice like the original black lion chests. This is different from how I suspected they'd resolve this. It's good and bad. I'll explain why. 

It's bad because, if you're a fantastically unlucky person like me, approximately 100 chests of various sorts gave you no weapon or shoulder skin :) 

It's good because there are still no guarantees. It also looks like the low, low rate was not tweaked. This means it is worth holding onto these skins for a few weeks or a month and checking the price peaks. 

Originally I thought they'd allow an 'exchange' service -150 tonics and 15 assorted boost tokens for a greatsword skin. I'm quite happy they didn't (from an economical point of view). 

Another thing of note: the mad king chests also drop materials - the very materials I've began hoarding! Plus a few lower level glacial/charged crafting mats.

That's not the full haul from the 23 chests but it's nearly the lot. 

As you can see, it's probably not worth it to buy keys for chests at the moment. You could buy these materials at a much better rate directly. Even with this secondary method of gaining items and another chance at a weapon skin the chests feel a bit disappointing. Hopefully it doesn't change our gem > gold holiday even flipping strategy.

If you are like me and experimented with the chests then this is definitely advisable (just don't use your best boosts that can be handy for levelling alts or gaining more karma). 


PS be sure and check out this week's Shoddycast post if you haven't already. Farming never sleeps! 

Gold Guru - Plinx Meta Event Farming

Hello everyone! We hope everyone is having a great time with the Halloween festivities. When you're done learning about the Mad King and collecting pieces of candy corn, you may want to get some farming done. And just in time, TK from the ShoddyCast has brought you yet another edition of the Farmer's Almanac.

This week, TK tackles the large meta event chain referred to simply as Plinx. The name refers to the NPC you are helping throughout the events named Plinx, of course. He's an Asura that you will be defending and escorting through 4 different events.

The first event you will be defending Plinx as he builds his H.A.Z.M.A.T suit throughout a series of waves consisting of undead hylek and other goodies. These guys will spawn relatively grouped together so they are easier to tag than the latter events.

After Plinx adorns his might suit, you will then escort him to a helicopter landing zone. This is the lengthy part of the event chain. Risen will spawn in a line along the walls towards the north. Since they are in a line, it's a bit harder to tag all the mobs before they go down.

When Plinx finally reaches the landing zone, the next event starts up immediately. In a PvE version capture the point, you will only progress through the event when no risen are within the blue lines. Once the indicator bar is full, the event is done.

Less then a minute after the landing zone is cleared, Plinx will need to be escorted to Caer Shadowfain as he brings supplies from the helicopter to the outpost. This is a pretty quick event since Plinx will not stop to fight mobs as his hands are full of supplies.

On top of the 4 events in the chain, there will probably be a couple other events going on in the same area. In the embedded video, you will see that TK ran into a champion broodmother as well as a champion undead abomination. With the 6 events combined, TK received over 100,000 experience, over 2,000 Karma and about 17 silver. Once mob spawn locations are know, we can see this making more money but we doubt it would be more than the previous Curse Shore farm we explained. But if you're working for your legendary weapon, you may want to consider this location because the Karma and experience is very nice.

Now drop your candy, get out there and do some farming!

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Holiday Black Lion Chests

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A number of you guys have reported great success with gem flippage and I think it'll be a solid technique going into each event. When gems have reached a low point a month or a few weeks before Halloween, Chrismas (and any other event Arenanet cares to bring to us), invest in them and wait until the first few days of the event in question. 

I had one concern about this in future events - RNG. As I discussed in the excellent comment section of yesterday's post, I 'experimented' with about 60 keys - and I got about 10 back from the chests opened. 70 chests opened - not one sign of a Halloween skin or item. 

But that's okay! It was a gamble and I wrote off my experiment. Then I noted a lot of others complaining. If enough people are angry about this, the word will spread 'chests aren't ever worth keys - even during events'. This has a large knock on effect on gem prices and I was concerned we'd end up without this nice event flipping. 

Then I found this from the NA community team lead: 

Hey, everyone. As mentioned earlier in this thread, the team has taken on board your feedback and concerns.
We’d recommend not throwing away or selling the items you’ve been receiving in the Black Lion Chests, as we’ll be providing ways in which those items can be used to obtain Halloween-related items…
We’ll have further updates when they become available.Thank you again for all your feedback.
Rejoice! Gems will most likely increase even more when new events roll round (if this model is copied to future events). If X chests ALWAYS gets you enough to exchange for an event themed skin then gem flipping could well become a super means of doubling your gold.  We shall see. 

BUT there is something any of you lucky enough to be holding a weapon (to sell) needs to do now: 

Get rid of it on the TP before prices are reduced!

I imagine anyone who spent ~ $20 on gems is going to be able to get 1 x skin in this exchange. That of course could be way off the actual requirements for a skin via black lion chest item exchange but nevertheless halloween skins are going down in price. 

Keep the comments coming! They've been great the past few days. I'm going to finish up my work assigned for today and get in game and see what's changing/moving in the economy. 


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Halloween Food - Revealed

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Good morning! Some good guesses last night! 

I'll get straight to the point and put you all out of your misery in terms of cooking recipes (which seemed to be the most common speculation:


So congratulations to those of you who guessed right. But the thinking doesn't end here - I'm sure some of you will want to rush to sell - don't just yet. 

Some of these buffs are really nice but because of the speculation and stockpiling prices are generally falling. This is day one - wait for more peaks to come. 

If you speculated on an item and don't see it here don't fret - there's more to discover. There's an artificing vendor in Lions Arch but I think that the fact it's only a chef and artificer to be conspicuous. It may be they're the only halloween recipe vendors or the others may be in other towns/cities. 

We may even see some later. This event is running for a week after all. 

And given that it's a week of discoveries we may see particular discoveries (new mystic forge recipes) that drive other prices up as we go on. If you have a material that fits in the forge during this event, don't give up hope (and sell at a considerable loss) if the materials you pick aren't in any recipes you can see today.

I also want to touch on the candy corn there. It's required for EVERYTHING. It's at about 59 copper now. I don't know how abundant it is yet but I DO know that these recipes - all halloween recipes - are available permanently but the ingredients (corn) might not be. 
Candy Corn could be a great bet to stockpile - physically or by investment - for later months. 

Now, off I go to find out more facts - share anything you spot in the comments below! 


Monday, October 22, 2012

Halloween Event Brainstorm Post

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I work from home. I'm a lucky guy in that respect, though I must admit it's a trial making sure I work instead of game. This week though, this kind of freedom is a real bonus. I don't need to chalk up long hours, I just need to be able to keep an eye on TP prices. 

Everyone can also make use of GW2Spidy - unless you work in one of those big brother offices where most of the external internet is barred (been there, done that). But sometimes there's no substitute for debate and exchanging ideas.

I want this post to be a 'go to' area for ideas that I - and you - have over the halloween event. Comment as many times as you want when you get ideas, spot trends or think you may be onto a money spinner. I'll be doing the same. 

If something looks like it'll be too big and confusing as a single comment I can post it - if you think you have something to say that'll end up that big, let me know and we'll see about setting up a guest post. 

As they say, 2 heads are better than one. Three heads are better still. And so on Keep this post bookmarked and hopefully we'll all make some coin as the week rolls on!


Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Power Of Alts When Farming

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Enough talk of investments for now. A truly successful economic plan needs diversity. Once you have your funds invested in a series of niches and you have an idea of when the price will peak what do you do until then? What's a good way to get money steadily and regularly? 

In Guild Wars 2 - maybe more than any other MMO - farming is an excellent way of making money. Shoddycast - in their most recent top notch farming post talk about farming in two level ranges - high level and low level - and I think this is really important and I'll tell you why. 

Farming in a game is, traditionally, a tedious task. It's something that you're doing for an end goal (profit) rather than for the fun of activity itself.  I like that GW2 is a bit different. The combat is always fun for me. It takes a lot of the tedium out of farming. But even so, I do get bored on my main in Orr.

When I do I switch to another profession. Mixing things up keeps you feeling fresh and lets you play longer. And, welp, I'm an altoholic so I get a lot of benefits from combining levelling and farming. It's efficient. Efficiency and farming go hand in hand.

In a lot of games, playing content below the level cap is a big loss.  That time is time you could spend farming on your main. But in GW2 alt levelling isn't just efficient, it's still pretty profitable. 

For example, while Orr will always come out tops for drops, check the TP. Compare the prices of copper, iron, platinum and mithril. Right now the total difference between the lowest tier and the highest tier is about 9 copper. Picking up every node in a low level area will net you almost as much as the nodes in Orr. Not counting Orichalcum of course.

Even when talking about Ori, there are benefits to alts. If you level an alt enough - so that you've more than 1 level 80 - you can harvest those top tier nodes multiple times. Because of the time invested levelling it's not a "tactic" to earn profit - not everyone has that kind of time - but it's a pretty nice cherry on top if you like levelling alts anyway.

So whether you're on your existing main and haven't reached 80 yet, or you're on a newly created alt enjoy the levelling process and have fun. Follow the hearts, DEs and explore. Just make sure to pick up harvesting tools and get those nodes.

Oh that's right...

I can't forget about the loyal, monogamous gamers out there. Those guys and girls who don't like alts but prefer character and one character only for life. You guys can benefit from the "theory" of alt farming too. 

Have you explored the whole map yet? Play in zones where you still need to chase 100% completion and gather the low level nodes. Do you like PvP? Enter a borderland and keep your eyes peeled for copper, iron and other low level material nodes. 

The principle of alt farming is efficiency and beating tedium. When Orr is getting too tedious, move on. You'll find the money feels like it's rolling in easier. Farming is a state of mind!


Friday, October 19, 2012

Holiday Event Speculation

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My favourite topic of the past ~10 hours. Halloween event market speculation! 

I hope most of you caught the announcement (if not, here it is) but one of the most important pieces of information contained there is this tidbit: 

"The Black Lion Chest is getting a spooky upgrade for Halloween. Between October 23 and November 5 each Black Lion Chest you open has a chance to give you one of six exclusive Halloween-themed weapon skins!"

Well, as you can imagine black lion chests spiked - hard. They reached up to about 50 copper and are fluctuating now between 20 and 40 copper. People who invested heavily (500,000 chests were bought within 90 minutes of this announcement) are reselling at a higher price point now - intending to make profit more than once as the prices go up and down. There will be more peaks and troughs to come.

After all, this is just off the back of the announcement 10 hrs back. Those who hang out in sites that speculate about GW2 profits and trends are the force making the price move now. When this information goes wild to the unkempt masses - particularly over the holiday event period when players start seeing these skins and asking "omg! where do you get that weapon?!" - you can expect the price to do some more dancing up and down. 

Because of this, right now, even at these inflated prices, there's still potential profit to be made. It's not impossible that we'll see chests go over the 1 silver mark. It's a bit late to the party though.

At the same time, the real winners here are those who had stockpiled when they were at 3 copper and are now reselling back to those of us who were sleeping or slow to get the news at 35 copper plus. They may rebuy when the chests go under 20 copper. They may not. 
For those who don't feel like investing at this time at these prices (or for those who can't afford it at the current market price) I think what you should do is store this information for each holiday event... 

It's possible that chests will never drop as low as they have been again (3 or 4 copper). But then again I thought the same thing after Arenanet temporarily added the permanent mystic forge crafting items to the chests (and they spiked then too).  

Yet the prices fell anyway. The market forgets. Coming up to Christmas and other holidays, we should always remember :) In fact, if you bought chests when they were on the rise and are worried about 'missing' the best time to sell - don't. Hold onto them and watch this same process repeat every holiday event. Unless you hear word they'll change how chests function. 

There's another knock on effect to this current maelstrom of activity. Each of these chests will need a key to open. Those keys (though they can drop from the chests - say an average of 3 chests per key) are bought with gems only (rarely they drop, oh so rarely). 

So players will need gems. Now a lot of players won't be able to afford the $ cost of gems so they'll get them by exchanging gold for gems. 

THIS means that the gem > gold ratio is going to change. Gems are going to rocket up in value.  If you have the cash to spare and plan on buying some gems sell them for gold during a peak this holiday event. 

When things die down and the price corrects itself, buy far more gems back for less gold. 

Investing and speculating is never a certain thing but right now, there appears to be a good chance that clever investment will earn you many times your investment back over the week to come!

Anyone else noted interesting things happening? Or maybe you have a holiday event prediction that you've bet on and are confident enough to share? 


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Gold Guru - Cursed Shore and Jute Scrap Farming

Hello everybody! First off, we'd like to thank the new owners of GW2Riches for allowing us to continue posting our information on the site. Hopefully, with their ideas and our continued support, this site will continue to grow and supply everyone with a wealth of knowledge to help make everyone's Guild Wars 2 experiences more enjoyable.

 TK is keeping up with our Farmer's Almanac series by bringing you the ever popular Cursed Shore farming spot which is located mainly at Penitents and Shelter's Gate waypoints. If you're already familiar with CS farming then maybe you'd like to try some jute scrap farming. It's very simple to farm and even a new character can try it.

The Cursed Shore's main events at the previously mentioned waypoints are both "defense events" during which mobs will spawn in waves. Penitents' event has invulnerable mobs that cannot be tagged until they reach a point just before the gate you're defending. The good thing about this is that you know exactly where you need to cast your AoE abilities for mob tagging. The best thing to do is start casting them a second or two before they reach that point. Oh, and a quick tip: BEWARE OF THE EXPLODING CHICKENS!

The second point at Shelter's Gate has spider mobs as well as green ghoul thingies. Sadly, these can be attacked at any point after they spawn so you have to be quick enough to tag them before others kill them. If you're having trouble tagging the mobs that spawn to the left, try running down the steps to the right where spiders, including the veteran spider, spawn and tag them there.

A little bonus about these two spots is that there are several NPCs to sell all your drops to as well as purchase salvage kits. As for what to do with the rare items that drop, that's entirely up to you. Keep in mind that there's a variable chance(based on type of salvage kit) of 1-3 Globs of Ectoplasm from them, but you can also sell the item itself on the Trading Post for around 14 silver currently. I, personally, have been placing my rare items on the TP. Again, entirely up to you.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Investing in Crafting Materials

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There are a few trends that are worth keeping an eye on at the moment. One of my favourites involves crafting materials.

As Guild Wars 2 continues to progress, more and more legendary and exotic mystic forge recipes are being discovered. The majority of these look beautiful. Beauty, or appearance, is one of the key factors in game. So it's no surprise that this has an interesting impact on the trading post. 

Look at Molten Lodestones - they've leaped up in price in the past few days. They peaked at 1 gold each after lurking in the 20 - 30 silver range. At the time of writing they're steadily close to 60 silver each. What happened?

Well someone (a player named Maisen) figured out the recipe for a pretty nice exotic greatsword - Volcanus - which required 250 molten lodestones. From there it was only a matter of time before the price spiked. Investors and buyers were jumping in with both feet. 

In a game where new recipes like this are going to be discovered for a month or more to come, and each of these recipes contain ingredients with minimal value (at this time) that you can snap up, it's not a bad idea to invest in crafting materials. 

Of course, you have to understand that an investment is a gamble. But even if you guess wrong you'll  insulate yourself against gold inflation (gold will be worth less as more of it enters the economy) to some extent. 

I recommend finding materials (preferably rare) that are for weaponsmithing/artificing/huntsman 400 (used to craft the highest level weapons). 

Find cheap materials and don't invest all your money at once. And don't invest in one market alone (unless you know something the rest of us don't - in which case, share!) 

I've already made one educated guess which I'll reveal in the comments below once we get a few good ideas from other posters.

As always, share this if you liked what you read!


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

What's The Recipe For Success?

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Theoretically there are ways to make money by crafting but some market prices aren't very supportive of this ambition. In fact, today while browsing the market something struck me: Vanilla Beans should be exotic.
The fix to old power levelled cooking (which also led Tyria towards its current status as a buttery nation - "Why do all these bags have butter in them?") also made some cooking ingredients much more rare than others. Much more rare. 
I found these two!
Vanilla beans are needed for making bowl of bakers wet ingredients. Which is in turn required for my favourite buff treat in the game at the moment: Omnomberry Bars

These are awesome. For those who don't know the buff is +10 experience from kills, 30% magic find and 40% increased gold from monsters.

But what's happening with the trading post price? For those of you that didn't need to read the link here's what it reveals at the time I made this post:
  • Average Trading Post Cost Of Mats:522
  • Average offer on Trading Post: 221
  • Average profit on Trading Post: -31

(Multiple the average offer x 2 because 2 bars are produced = 4s 42c) 

I'm looking at you Vanilla Bean ಠ_ಠ (tecnically it's omnomberry's fault too - but he's a top tier ingredient so we'll let him off) .

Maxed out craft skills should give you benefits. With a direct approach (we'll come back to that later and in future articles) it's not happening. But it's not all doom and gloom with professions. 

Say you're a masochist and you're trying for Dusk or The Legend. Let's also say you've decided the mystic forge is the way you want to go about it you brave, brave gambler you. In this scenario, you can save costs when the market is favourable by crafting the 75+ rare swords or staves you chuck into Zommoros' bottomless belly. 

This isn't making you money though. It's minimising the cost of a legendary endeavour. It's still good but if you could craft to make sufficient profit you'd perhaps be better off chasing the ever increasing price of the pre-cursor's on the TP instead of gambling.

So are professions profitable? 

Right now we're still in an erratic market period roughly 2 months after launch. It takes a while for economies to level out. Even so, it's obvious to me that professions will be profitable in the long run. 

How can I be so confident? Let's look at omnomberry bars again. It's a great buff but right now, even if you know the recipe, it makes sense to buy the bar from the TP rather than craft it. 

Even if you have the materials required it makes more sense to sell those and buy the bar right now. 

This can't continue though. A lot of the bars keeping the price low are no doubt from players who stockpiled when the recipe made 7 instead of 2. When the market rights itself after this change, the fact that most are buying (instead of making) bars will mean they dry up and their price will increase. Markets aren't altruistic. No master chef is going to craft these at a loss.

But will there be profit?

I've got my eye on crafting and am particularly interested in it for two reasons:
  • There's never been more of an incentive in a popular MMO to level crafting (you gain experience - 10 levels for 1 - 400 each crafting skill). 
  • You can also level all 8 if you choose - and if you can afford it.
Looking again at cooking, these reasons have some knock on effects:
  • Characters choosing crafting as a level booster will buy as many of the materials required to make food buffs as they can afford (increasing the demand/cost for materials). 
  • There's little demand/great abundance of crafted goods made while levelling crafting.
  • Higher levelling recipes often require many of the same ingredients as higher recipes (older cooking guides require lots of vanilla beans because they were bulk bought from karma vendors). 
  • Demand for higher recipes remains constant; cost of materials increases due to players levelling alts. 
I find this fascinating and I'm sure Arenanet (with a paid economist on staff) is aware of it. 

Perhaps their thought process is that we're already rewarded for crafting in terms of experience. Perhaps they'll take a corrective stance if things don't level out (I believe they will) even though each time they change something, the ripples take a while to settle down.

So, crafting for profit - who's doing it? Who is waiting for changes to the crafting landscape courtesy of Arenanet?

I have to admit the current situation is something that's much more refined, complex and tasty than in other MMOs. 

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Friday, October 12, 2012

Guild Wars 2 Guides - Why Even Bother Buying One?

It's Friday and before I go and enter the land of intoxication I had a memory of conversations me and Craig had a few weeks ago.

It was around the whole Guild Wars 2 guide concept and just how pointless it is…

I got to Google and began searching around and seeing what utter brilliance there was out there (I'm being very sarcastic, by brilliance I mean crap).

I just can't get my head around the idea why anyone would buy a guild wars 2 guide and I'll break down my reasoning here now…

1) The main point and flaw is they cost money and your basically paying for something whether it be $37, $27 or whatever for information you could probably find for free…. in fact you can definitely find for free elsewhere

That's about it really lol

But seriously for that $27 or $37 that you blow on a guide you could assign a similar amount of money to buying in game gems which you can then convert to gold.

Those who buy a guide to learn how to level quickly - well that's just pointless. Spend the same kind of money on gems, get gold, buy crafting materials, use your karma to buy recipes and before you know it you can fire up the levels pretty quickly.

Leveling fast in guild wars 2 is pretty easy.

Then you have those who are looking to generate gold quicker. Again making gold is pretty damn easy. Following the route I just mentioned you can then craft items to sell at a profit on the trading house and make a ton of gold quickly that way. You will break even in no time with the right decision making.

Like I said spending money on a guide is pointless when you can spend that money in game and get all the benefits plus more that a guide wouldn't give you.

I know I'm quite brief on these points but in the next couple of weeks we will show you the whole process in motion via a video.

And of course for those who don't want to buy gems or aren’t part of a large guild we will also provide more free methods and which might not be as quick but are probably more fun.

Just my thoughts and please if you have the urge to buy a guild wars 2 guide book then let us know which one you’re thinking of. We will give you all you need on this site or point you in the right direction. Free is better :-)

I think I hear an Asahi (sweet, sweet beer) calling my name

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Look Good and Save Money In Guild Wars 2

I’m Craig (in-game name ‘Thundergore’ in more games than I care to mention) and I love GW2.
There are tons of cool things to do in this game and, as time goes on, I hope to write about pretty much every aspect that interests folks.

One of the things that interests me most of all, though, is the in-game economy. I love earning in-game currency - from gil in FF VII to gold in D3 and WoW or whatever (not that I play those last too much at the moment) – having enough gold to buy whatever I want is pretty awesome.

This post isn’t going to into specific tips much – there’ll be time enough for that later – but I do want to look at two very specific, very interesting elements of the guild wars 2 economy. Things that I think are cool and that more people should be aware of.

First of all, this game is all about looks. Stats mean very little. This is really interesting – it’s something that you could only really compare to something like the real life fashion market. Other MMO’s build value based  largely on an item’s function, GW2 builds value based largely on an item’s looks.

Here's an example. Take a look at what happened with Anura. Have you seen this sceptre? It’s awesome! It looks like this:

And it looks even better when you equip it instead of preview (but I don't dig sceptres so I lean towards selling). 

Now not many people knew it looked like this until a few days ago when someone made a reddit post about how awesome it looked and how they got it for 2g. Once the look was known the Anura price hike commenced! It's sitting at about 8-9g now - well above it's previous average and it's not likely to drop until people stop liking casting spells with frogs on sticks (hint: they never will).

What’s interesting about all this vanity is that the normal methods of predicting supply and demand are turned a little on their head – not completely (lots of things in GW2 still work like a normal MMO) but enough to make things interesting.

If you’re the first person to see how awesome something looks, and you know how to get it cheaply at the current market value it’s not a bad idea to risk some money on LOOKS. People even try to game the system on popular sites like reddit and I’ve seen a few cons pan out over there – be careful if you haven’t verified it yourself in-game!

Second thing I wanted to raise in this post is the subject of gems.

Look at the madness around Diablo 3. I mean, the game is a bit disappointing in terms of what it could have been but I gotta admit I was psyched about the real money aspect. In the end I made a good deal more than my investment in the game back (nothing compared to the bots mind you) but it was quite an experience and I look forward to more like it in future.

Now Guild Wars 2 has a real life cash shop too but, as people rightly point out, there’s no ‘out’. Gems can flow to gold which can flow back to gems but there’s no ‘Anet balance’. No means to cash out to paypal.

But this isn’t the whole story...

I want to quote something I said near the top of the post: 

"having enough gold to buy whatever I want is pretty awesome.”

This is pretty much the entire drive behind MMO economies. You’re not saving for your kids educations. You’re not saving for a nice holiday. You’re gathering gold so that whenever you want something, you can have it. It’s a kind of freedom.

Some people may be really good at exercising that freedom in-game but not out of it (hey, we could ALL use more real $ couldn’t we?) and this is when a cash shop pisses people off. They’re successful in-game but are limited by their lack of real resources. You can’t get the big awesome hat of awesomeness because it’s not available in-game and cynical game company X knows you want it. They designed it to be wanted.

Arena net (like Valve with TF2) have given us a way around this by giving you the opportunity to get all the cool looking things in-game: we can use gold to buy gems and use those gems just as if we bought them with real cash.

What this means is we save real money while simultaneously enjoying the game to the maximum (silly hats, silly outfits, bank space, transmutation stones, you name it).

It’s like buying anything else. You buy things to get functionality or enjoyment from them and most don't hand you money back. But if you are careful when you purchase (buy it for the lowest amount possible) the savings compared to the dearer alternatives are a net gain. You reduce what you sacrificed (opportunity cost) and that's a very real financial gain.

It doesn’t pay out like Diablo 3 but Guild Wars 2 offers you a chance to save money by playing the gold economy well and it makes so much sense to do so and I can’t wait to talk about it more.

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